See the Gardeners' World You Tube web site for all the winning gardens and finalists.

In the May 2016 issue of Gardeners' World Magazine the question in the header was posed! I decided to enter the competition and sent off the images shown at base of the page, by the deadline date of 27th June.

This was their 25th anniversary year and they wanted to celebrate British gardening by launching their first-ever Garden of the Year competition. The aim, to see inspiring gardens, created and nurtured by real, hands-on gardeners. From the three categories they drew nine finalists, and in October, I discovered I was one of the finalists and runner up in the small space category!

The timeline of events thereafter are shown below, with the latest first!

On the 21st November Gardeners' World posted all the short videos of the 9 finalists on their facebook page too! The one for Driftwood is below.

On 20th February 2017, photographer, Paul Debois, posted a blog about his shoot last Summer for the magazine and included 5 images of Driftwood too. You can read it here.

Magazine Editor, Lucy Hall, wrote in the November magazine's welcome: "What a creative lot you are. For sheer inspiration, quality of planting and bags of style, the entries to our new Garden of the Year competition had it all. We were inundated with photos of amazing gardens in every size, accompanied by often deeply moving life stories showing the power of gardens to transform us. Sifting the enties was a mammoth task but we've emerged with nine top gardens." Driftwood was one!

After a tweet about my winning Fundraiser of the Year from More Radio, Lucy also tweeted the message below!

On Saturday 22nd October I received both my finalist certificate along with several copies of the magazine. I was thrilled to see the whole page article about the garden on page 49. There were some lovely quotes from the judges too!

"I really like the way he's used the wider landscape."
Adam Frost, RHS Gold Medal winning designer and Gardeners' World presenter.

"He has really clever planting with lots of bedding, which is a great idea when you're gardening by the sea."
Martin Fish, gardening writer, TV and radio presenter.

"It's clear it's a deeply personal garden,and I really like the use of the quirky features."
Janine Pattinson, award winning landscape designer and RHS horticulturalist.

"I really like the way he's incorporated seaside items."
Liz Challoner, keen gardener and represeantative of Cobra Garden Machinery, sponsor.

Below are the original images from Paul Debois used in the feature above.

On Friday 21st October I was invited to the BBC Sussex Brighton studio to join, Editor, Lucy Hall, in London, and the winner of the Family Garden award, Magda, who was in Guildford, to prerecord an interview, which was broadcast on Feel Good Friday with Joe Talbot and again on Dig It on Sunday 23rd October. Click the image of me in the Brighton studio to hear the full 15 minute interview.

In her introduction, the editor of the magazine, Lucy Hall said the competition set out to look for clever ways in the use of space, along with inspirational and creative use of ideas. There had been a high quality of entrants and, in her words, entries of a massively high standard. The judges had looked for clever solutions and the ability to make something of unique and difficult spaces. She identified Driftwood and it's closeness to the sea in having created small areas of shelter.

I've been through the catalogue and have chosen the £250 worth of Cobra garden equipment. A high level hedge trimmer, a pole pruner and a trolley.

As a result of being a finalist, Driftwood will be featured in Gardeners' World Magazine, probably in April 2017, which is really good news.

I was contacted by the editor, Lucy Hall, on the 17th October, prior to publication, and told that, whilst I had not won the overall competition for Garden of the Year 2016, Small Space, the garden was a finalist and I had won £250 worth of Cobra garden equipment and would receive a certificate.

She also said: "Your entry was always a real stand-out and genuinely was knocking on the door for the top prize all the way. It will be such a pleasure to share more pictures of your garden with our readers over the coming months."

The magazines panel of independent judges gathered in early September, to discuss the category winners and overall Judges' Choice. The winners were formally announced on publication of the November issue of the magazine on 20th October to subscribers. I had to wait for my copy to arrive on the news stands the following week!

Professional photographer, Paul Debois, came and spent the day here on the 9th August for the film shoot. He was amazed at the number of photo opportunities in both the front and back gardens.

On the 29th July I was amazed to receive an e mail, confirming that the garden had been shortlisted for the next stage of the competition and that arrangements would be made for a professional photographer to visit and shoot the garden!

In addition to the photographs, we had to answer a number of questions to support our entry. You can see the questions, and my answers on the 3 documents below. Click to bring up larger image.